Fiction Friday – the strain

A continuation of Fiction Friday.

***
It’d been a rough day.

Detective Jones felt completely drained.

She’d thought notifying the family would be the worst part. It usually was. Trying to remain calm and project comfort. Remaining compassionate without losing herself. That was always exhausting. She’d been expecting the strain. She’d prepared for it.

But she hadn’t prepared for the ongoing, day-to-day pressure of the case.

Nothing like this had happened in years. The public was in an uproar, eager for details of the case, for assurance they were safe. The department had been flooded with press inquires, as media clamored for the latest.

And through it all, Detective Jones battled her own demons.

No matter how many times she went over the case in her mind, she could still barely believe it had happened.

Usually, she was able to analyze cases with a professional detachment. Caring about those involved but able to marry that with a calculated understanding of the facts.

But not this time.

Every time she tried to step back, tried to take in the big picture, tried to see the nearly indiscernible pattern she’d always excelled at finding…the gruesome details of the case would snap her back down.

How could she hope to solve a case she could barely even accept?

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